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REVIEW: The Flash 3×13 “Attack on Gorilla City”

Look I could really give two shits about anything else today, we just had a nearly full Gorilla City episode and I am thrilled. So, “Attack on Gorilla”  is a decent start to this years two parter and much like Barry’s first experience with time travel or his adventures on Earth-2 last year it is just plain fun to watch all of the escalation. Here we have Barry going up against one of his better known foes, who we have seen be built up from a pure physical powerhouse perspective into the Grodd we see today. Cunning, deceptive, and yet still physically imposing this was the Grodd we were always meant to have and now that he is here Barry’s life will be hell for years to come. While we are seeing the A-team deal with Grodd, we manage to get a mostly satisfactory B-team plot around one of the better romances on the show.

So let’s start with our villain who has finally managed to reach his full potential. Grodd has always unfortunately been limited due to the constraints of the show whether they be budgetary or simply plot wise. We started with Grodd being changed by the same dark matter wave that gave Barry his powers and now we have Grodd as fully in control of Gorilla City. This is looking to be a fairly bare bones adaptation of the recent Gorilla Warfare arc of The Flash comic but either way Grodd is finally Grodd. He is sadistic, domineering, cunning, and finally not alone. One of Grodd’s greatest weaknesses up to this point is that he has never had a true foil. Sure, Barry is his arc nemesis but he has never had a true equal until this point. We got some brief material and seeing how Grodd is viewed by Gorilla City and I really hope to see this play out more.

Speaking of Gorilla City, holy shit it looks fucking rad. Yeah, we are going for a classic hidden city motif and not the super advanced ape culture we have seen in other depictions, but its still damn cool. I mean the arena and the sheer imagery of an army of gorillas preparing to wage war on Central City was so cool. We even got to see Solivar for a little bit and he is nothing like the Solivar we have come to expect. Keith David does a fun job of making the albino gorilla be imposing and smart in the few scenes we get. I mean how satisfying was it to see Grodd get bitch slapped across a room, and the fight in the colosseum was definitely fun. It was just slightly off putting to have these big characters around for all a couple of scenes and then make Cisco and Harry do the heavy lifting. Is it too much to ask for the gorillas to talk, we had King Shark do it last year, I have to believe it would not be all that hard to animate.

Another fun aspect of this episode was Barry being hopeful and fighting for the future. Yes, Barry hasn’t believed that everything is set in stone or that Iris’ death is unavoidable but for once in a very long time Barry has hope. That is who Barry is supposed to be if you remember all the way back to the pilot. Ollie wants Barry to be this symbol and to inspire those around him, but here we have everything being put into practice for the greater good. However, what makes Barry having hope so exciting is it means soon his entirely life will be turned to shit and he will be tested on whether this hope actually means anything to those around him. Barry is facing true adversity in the form of the oncoming future and it will be here sooner than he thinks. I can’t wait to see if he is able to remain being this beacon of hope or if he gives into the hate.

Speaking of fun plots we got to see Wally and Jesse agree to be together which was sweet. I mean in terms of all the couples on the show this one is definitely one of the least annoying and well thought out. Both actors manage to play off each other relatively well and the idea of Jesse being afraid of Wally because of how much he loves his powers is a nice sticking point. I mean is there really anything Wally loves more than being fast and using his abilities, not really. So for Jesse to confront him was a strong play that worked well into the overall story. Now we get to see Wally try to balance his addiction to his powers with his feelings for Jesse. There really is a ton of potential for this story, so I really hope Jesse doesn’t die.

Overall war is coming to Central City, and if you thought one Grodd was bad get ready for a whole army of them.

Final Grade A-

+Gorilla City

+Grodd and Solivar

+The colosseum fight

+Wally and Jesse plot

-Why hide Gypsy?

-No actual speaking gorillas

Extra Thoughts

-Seriously, how in the hell did Gypsy get there?

-Julian and Caitlin are dating. Nice knowing you Julian

-There may never be a better read than HR saying Harry is going to be so pissed about Wally and Jesse.

-How great is Tom Cavanaugh, playing three characters in one episode? Seriously fucking talented.

About the author

Scott Swartz